Thursday, 24 June 2004  
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Ravi on the run

by Rohan Mathes

Senior UNP Parliamentarian Ravi Karunanayake averts police arrest with the help of G. L. Peiris, S. B. Dissanayake and their supporters.

Ravi Karunanayake has been summoned by the Talangama Police Station to make a statement yesterday morning, pertaining to an alleged misappropriation of funds of the CWE, on a fraudulent sale of the CWE branch at 234, Vauxhall Street Colombo, to Hatton National Bank.

Karunanayake has refrained from calling over at the police station to make the statement yesterday morning as directed by the police, and on a court order, a special police unit, under the direction of ASP Wedasinghe, has raided the Kotte residence of Karunanayake around 6 p.m. yesterday.

However, a mob of UNP supporters, including Prof. G. L. Peiris, Rajitha Senaratne and S. B. Dissanayake among others, have stepped-in and prevented the arrest of Karunanayake.

The police have eventually left Karunanayake's residence, and further investigations are pending on the matter. The passport of Karunanayake has also been impounded on a court order.

Meanwhile, pro-UNP Attorney-at-Law Upul Jayasuriya when contacted, told the "Daily News" that this raid has been carried out by the police sans any basis, and was a breach of the fundamental rights of an individual, leave alone a Member of Parliament.

"The police did not give any reason for this raid. They did not have any search warrant to search Ravi Karunanayake's residence. The IGP, the Speaker of Parliament, the Deputy Leader of the UNP Karu Jayasuriya or any senior official of the Solicitor General's Office were unaware of this exercise and denied any knowledge or approval to do so" Upul Jayasuriya said.

The UNP Media Spokesman Prof. G. L. Peiris, at a hastily summoned press conference yesterday evening, is reported to have told newsmen that the UNP would take stern legal action against this whole issue, which according to the UNP, is unfounded, and a planned conspiracy to take Ravi Karunanayake into custody.

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